This Will Probably Be Like 'The Wizard'

December 18, 2008


Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski has acquired the film rights to an article in the Wall Street Journal about a man's obsession with the video game Second Life:

Universal and "Pirates of the Caribbean" helmer Gore Verbinski have acquired a 2007 Wall Street Journal article they will use as the basis for a film about the online fantasy role-playing world and its detrimental impact on the real lives of players.

Verbinski will develop the film as a directing vehicle; Steven Knight ("Eastern Promises") will pen the script.

The article by Alexandra Alter focuses on a married man who spends as many as 20 hours a day on a computer, existing through an avatar who is a thriving, musclebound entrepreneur. In reality, he is a diabetic, chain-smoking 53-year-old.

I just read the article (you can too!) and what the Variety story fails to mention is that the man is an electronic bigamist--married to one woman in real life and another lady in Second Life. So with that conflict and advanced computer graphics taking us INSIDE THE COMPUTER, I guess I can almost imagine how a man literally only playing an online game could be a movie. This part of the story will probably come at the height of the second act:

He upgraded his avatar, buying defined stomach muscles, a furry chest and special hair that sways when he walks.

When you buy yourself special hair that sways when you walk, you're just setting yourself up for a fall.

Universal, Verbinski plan to role-play [Variety]

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